Person holding the Earth in their hands

Live Sustainably
Carbon Footprint​​​

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines carbon footprint as the total amount of greenhouse gases that are emitted into the atmosphere each year by a person, family, building, organization, or company

A persons carbon footprint includes greenhouse gas emissions from:

  • Fuel that an individual burns directly, such as by heating a home or riding in a car. 
  • Producing the goods or services that the individual uses, including emissions from power plants that make electricity, factories that make products, and landfills where trash gets sent.​
100 lbs of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is equal to producing ​546 plastic bottles. ​​*

​Reduce Your Carbon Footprint by Living Sustainably​​

Tips to Live Sustainably At Home

  • Purchase Energy Star Appliances – Look for Energy Star-rated products in more than 40 categories, including TVs, refrigerators, dishwashers, and air conditioners. Save hundreds of lbs. of CO2 per year. 
  • Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent (CFL) bulbs or LEDs. 

Note: please recycle your used incandescent, CFL, or LED bulbs. These items should NOT be discarded in your curbside waste or recycling bins. Instead, take these used items to local recycling centers

It's especially important to recycle CFL bulbs to prevent the release of mercury into the environment since these bulbs contain mercury.

  • Use Less Hot Water, Wash Only Full Loads in Your Washing Machine & Take Shorter Showers - The water heater is a large user of energy in most homes and 90% of the energy used to wash clothes is from heating the water. Reduce over 100 lbs. of CO2 per year.
  • Adjust Your Thermostat – Cool your home at 78 degrees or warmer with the thermostat fan set to “auto”. Raise the temperature to 82 degrees or warmer when you’re away from home. Reduce 2,000 lbs. of CO2 per year.
  • Clean Air Conditioning Filters – Clean your A/C filters monthly to save energy and money on cooling costs. Reduce 350 lbs. of CO2 per year.
  • Unplug Unused Electronics – When electronic devices are turned off but still plugged in, they continue to use energy. Reduce over 1,000 lbs. of CO2 per year.
  • Limit the Time You Run Your Pool Pump – In summer, no more than 6 hours a day. In winter, no more than 4 hours a day. Reduce hundreds of lbs. of CO2 per year.
  • Avoid Using Multiple Refrigerators - If you have an extra refrigerator that is not kept full or is hardly used, turn it off or get rid of it. Reduce hundreds of lbs. of CO2 per year.
  • Reduce Garbage - Buy products with less packaging and recycle paper, plastic and glass. Reduce ​1,000 lbs. of CO2 per year.
  • Plant Native Drought Resistant Plants – Xeriscape is quality landscaping that conserves water and protects the environment. Trees intake carbon dioxide and make clean air for us to breathe. Visit NatureScape Broward for more information.

*C​alculated based on the average carbon footprint of a 500ml water bottle, which is estimated to be 82.8g by:

Tips to be Sustainable on the Road

  • Inflate Your Tires - Keep the tires on your car properly inflated and check the tires monthly.
  • Change Your Car's Air Filter - Check your car's air filter monthly and change it when needed.
  • Give Your Car a Break - Leave your car at home. Walk, bike, carpool, or use mass transit.
  • Report Smoking Vehicles - Visit the Smoking Vehicles page
  • Purchase Fuel Efficient or Alternative Fuel Vehicles - Getting a few extra miles per gallon makes a big difference. Reduce thousands of lbs. of CO​2 and save money per year.

Tips to be Sustainable in the Office / School

  • Use Recycled Paper & Print on Both Sides - Be sure to purchase 100% post-consumer recycled paper.
  • Shut Down Computers at Night - Shut down or turn off computers, monitors, printers, and speakers each night.
  • Use Power Strips - Plug all electronics into power strips and turn them off each night to save more energy.
  • Program Copy Machines - Have them enter sleep and shut-down modes after a selected time.
  • Purchase Green Products - Including Energy Star rated electronics & vending machines, green cleaners, and fuel-efficient vehicles.
  • Subscribe to Receive Environmental Character Education Newsletters - Email to be added to the distribution list. 
  • Receive an Energy Audit - An Energy Audit will identify cost-beneficial improvements for your facility.
  • Conserve Water - Check all faucets, water fountains, toilets, and urinals for any water left flowing.
  • Apply for an Emerald Award - Get recognized for outstanding environmentally responsible practices with the Emerald Awards.
  • Plant Native Drought Resistant Plants – Xeriscape is quality landscaping that conserves water and protects the environment. Trees intake carbon dioxide and make clean air for us to breathe. Visit NatureScape Broward for more information.